Dasarathan, D., Ellis, M., Chinnamani, S., Ayala, R. et al., "CFD Correlation with Wind-Tunnel for Dry Van Trailer Aerodynamic Devices," SAE Int. J. Commer. Veh. 9(2):83-93, 2016, doi:10.4271/2016-01-8016.
The primary purpose of this paper is to correlate the CFD simulations performed using PowerFLOW, a Lattice Boltzmann based method, and wind tunnel tests performed at a wind tunnel facility on 1/8th scaled tractor-trailer models. The correlations include results using an aerodynamic-type tractor paired with several trailer configurations, including a baseline trailer without any aerodynamic devices as well as combinations of trailer side skirts and a tractor-trailer gap flow management device. CFD simulations were performed in a low blockage open road environment at full scale Reynolds number to understand how the different test environments impact total aerodynamic drag values and performance deltas between trailer aerodynamic devices.There are very limited studies with the Class-8 sleeper tractor and 53ft long trailer comparing wind tunnel test and CFD simulation with and without trailer aerodynamic device. This paper is to fill this gap.